Morning Joe   |  February 04, 2014

‘Sex & the City’ star on being a working mom

Actress Sarah Jessica Parker  talks about her role in the play, “The Commons of Pensacola” and her new shoe line. Parker also talks about the role of a working mom in today’s society.

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This content comes from Closed Captioning that was broadcast along with this program.

>> the moment you came into the world, you wanted to be right here. probably you don't remember this one.

>> look at me!

>> you were about 11.

>> what else have you lied about?

>> what?

>> did you know about daddy?

>> of course, not! why do you drink this junk?

>> i am talking to you! are you sure you didn't know?

>> what is the matter with you?

>> what is the matter with me? i protected you! i believed you were incapable of something like this! you lied to me!

>> makes you tired to look at, doesn't it? a scene from the play "the commons of pensacola ," we will talk about in just a moment. first, look at these shoes. tell me whose shoes are hotter? it's kind of not.

>> please explain to your devoted viewers and followers that you forced me to put my legs up on this desk.

>> i did. at first, i did it and she told me it was not dignified but these are her shoes. you are now a shoe designer. barnicle, put your feet down.

>> with the very wonderful and wise partnership of george malcolm , iii, who has been in the shoe business for a long, long time. he has been, you know, the owner of the minola brand for many years.

>> the whole " sex in the city " carrie thing.

>> she had an affection for those shoes, as did it. rather boldly, that is the carrie shoe when which i'm wearing at this moment. they are made in italy. there is a wonderful gentleman who is probably third or fourth generation shoe maker in tuscany named ricardo and is wonderfully talented and his son now works with him. we have been able to make the shoes that i have not done for many, many years.

>> let me ask you this because i bring it up not just to sell the shoes although i love them and will get them. you're a mother of three. you're doing a play. is it once or twice a day?

>> we have two eight shows a week, two on saturday and two on sunday and two on wednesday.

>> it's amazing. it's also an emotional roller coaster and if you're a mother or a daughter, you feel it. and i don't know how you're doing everything you do. i think it's amazing. you keep on going. quite frankly, unless like i'm wrong, you don't have to, but you want to.

>> well -- ." anterior t there are working mothers who are doing things that are far more taxing and burdensome with little or no support and the financial -- little or no financial resource. i just want to say that doing a play and working on a shoe line is a privilege rather than -- i mean, there are women in this country who are working two and three jobs so i want to be clear about, you know, what is difficult and what is a chore.

>> because you're doing something you love to do.

>> and that i get this country do not have that opportunity. so is it tiring? sure. is it challenging? wonderfully so. is it a privilege to be tired and have these opportunities? absolutely. so you will not hear me complain. it doesn't mean i won't say, i'm tired, i'm sired, but the reality of my version of tired is really nothing that i should go on and on about.

>> i love that answer. that is absolutely correct.

>> the play is spectacular. blythe danner and you are spectacular.

>> she is extraordinary.

>> not to give everything away. the run almost lapses soon, right?

>> yes. we have been extended and extended and we can't extend any further. we are now -- it's becoming ungraceful to the next production.

>> it's loosely based on -- a long time since you had done anything on broadway. of course, everybody knows you, obviously, principally from " sex and the city ." what is the mindset from the long delays, the boredom of doing a tv series and multiple shoots and everything like that and then going live on stage?

>> television actually works really quickly. i love the pace of television versus a luxurious film schedule if you're lucky enough to have one. i think in the most stark sort of portrait, theater requires about 400 to 700 good takes every single night. film and television really need one take per scene to tell your story well, because once you get into the editing room, if you know have you that one good take and any great director or writer will say we got it, don't panic, you know? the other four were lousy but i got what i need. theater, which i guess is what separates the men from the boys or the women from the girls, is what it requires every single night.

>> no net.

>> no. and that is why i think they say it's an actor's medium because it's really you will to you. it's incumbent upon you to sort of find it every night and as human beings , it's often not possible to reach that kind of despair every single night and that is what is so engaging is when you know what it should be and you know where you have arrived perhaps the night before and you don't get there, how do you kind of reconcile that every night? but it's a thrill and new york theater audiences are incredibly, they have very high standards , you know? their expectations are. and they should be. but it's a thrill.

>> in this theater, thomas, i'll let you jump in, it's extremely intimate.

>> yes.

>> it's either there or it's not. when you walked out in the beginning, i thought that is sarah jessica parker . how am i going to get over this? no, i'm serious. you're right there. you're not even that far. but you did it. really quickly which is huge.

>> sarah jessica and i have been imaginary friends since square pegs .

>> i didn't know you knew that we had been imaginary friends .

>> yes, we have been since square pegs so i want to come out on that.

>> >> it's rarely revealed that one has harbored the same imaginary friend . i was just talking to my friend tabatha about an imaginary friend . if it's so public, how can be imaginary?

>> she asked that question?

>> yes. in her uniquely marilyn monroe voice. she is 4. if everybody know is about it, how can it be imaginary?

>> i'm glad to put it out on the table right now that we are imaginary friends . let's talk about the shoes because it's very cool. a lot of people recognize your love of fashion, not only from " sex in the city " but talk about the affordable. when you look at those shoes, do you say, hello, lover?

>> in my interior monologue , i might have whispered, hello, lover. price point is very important only because i know how hard it can be to earn a dollar and when you're asking them of that dollar from somebody, what are you offering in return? and i feel as if i'm honor bound to these women who really were an enormous part of any success that i've had. there were these 10 million women wand i feel a principle i have to maintain. so i wanted to make wonderful, beautiful shoes with, you know, great fit and comfort and i wanted to not do a mass line . so those margins get going like this. so we are pleased with the provides point we have been able to arrive at it it is what is called a sweet spot . it's called affordable but doesn't mean it's accessible to everybody. i wish we could have done it for a little bit less but i am pleased we are able to be between $250 and $400 for a pair of shoes made in italy with this kind of detail and this attention to this quality.

>> where do you have shelf space to buy these shoes?

>> it's exclusively at nordstrom which was a dream of mine because i have a nice history with the company. i started off as shoe merchants. it's an area that we are extremely good at doing well. and they welcomed this partnership and they have been amazing so the shoes will be delivered february 28th . we have a pop-up shop in new york for a feud.

>> i'm there. i'm there. oh, i'm so there. you don't have to reel me in.

>> we are traveling around the country and i'm doing a whistle-stop tour.

>> how fun! it's great to have you on. do you still watch " morning joe "?

>> of course! i'm like are we going to talk about chris christie this morning? are they going to poll me? what better --

>> what do you think?

>> a lot of conversations there to have. i know you have sentimental feelings and you have a friendship.

>> i do. ask me questions.

>> i would ask you this. do we have time for me to ask you a question?

>> sure.

>> during that two-hour press conference, what were you hoping to hear from him? and if you could kind of take -- if i could give you a truth serum now, tell me the one thing you thought was missing before everyone else jumped in and all of the pundits. what was missing from that press conference?

>> there were a couple of things missing. i think -- i know what was missing. when he -- when he said that bridget kelly was fired that he fired her on the spot.

>> he never had a conversation with her?

>> yeah. what? that's not the guy i know.

>> i think -- yeah. i think for me that -- i had it -- i took issue.

>> i took issue with that.

>> and one other thing that really struck me and then i heard it a million times so this is now no longer rev la tory. when he kept talking about the betrayal he felt.

>> right.

>> and what i kept waiting for him to say, which i think would have done enormous goodwill for him at that moment was i regret that i ever set a tone in my office that it made it seemed to anybody who was working with me, subordinate or not, that any of this kind of behavior was acceptable. and he never said that.

>> he did say -- he did say i've got to do a lot of soul searching .

>> that's not enough because when you have to say is the fish stinks from the head down. i am a leader and i set a tone in an office that made this somehow seem acceptable, or in any way sort of --

>> don't disagree. that is great don't need truth serum . ask me anything.

>> i'm really curious to see what is forthcoming in all of these e-mails.

>> i am too.

>> any way, my parents live in bergen county so they have feelings. old school lefties!

>> there you go.

>> you know they are a little bit like i think we have enjoyed this. thank you for having me all of you.

>> thank you for coming in. you can catch "the commons of pensacola " at the theater in manhattan. the dynamics between the mother and daughter. i walked out of there and i was like this. i called my mom and i called my daughter. so visit "the commons of pensacola " their website for more details.